Steven Ansell joined the Boston Symphony Orchestra as its principal violist in September 1996, having already appeared with the orchestra in Symphony Hall as guest principal viola. A native of Seattle, Mr. Ansell also remains a member of the acclaimed Muir String Quartet, which he co-founded in 1979, and with which he has toured extensively throughout the world.
A graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music, where he studied with Michael Tree and Karen Tuttle, Mr. Ansell was named professor of viola at the University of Houston at twenty-one and became assistant principal viola of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra under André Previn at twenty-three. As a recording artist he has received two Grand Prix du Disque awards and a Gramophone Magazine award for Best Chamber Music Recording of the Year. He has appeared on PBS’s “In Performance at the White House” and has participated in the Tanglewood, Schleswig-Holstein, Marlboro, Blossom, Newport, Spoleto, and Snowbird festivals. Mr. Ansell currently teaches at the Boston University School for the Arts and is also a member of the Boston Symphony Chamber Players.
Steven Ansell premiered Ezra Laderman’s Concerto for Viola and Orchestra with the Berkshire Symphony Orchestra. His solo appearances with the BSO include Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante with Malcom Lowe Previn; Berlioz’s Harold in Italy with Emmanuel Krivine and James Levine; Bruch’s Concerto for Viola, Clarinet and Orchestra with Seiji Ozawa; Strauss’s Don Quixote with Mstislav Rostropovich/Ozawa, Yo-Yo Ma/Ozawa, Steven Isserlis/Frühbeck de Burgos, and Jian Wang/Frühbeck de Burgos.